Monday, November 30, 2009

Cheese & Bacon Fries

I came up with this recipe after Jacob had Outback's fries. They are so easy and yummy!

Cheese & Bacon Fries
(Printable Version)
1 pkg frozen shoestring fries
2 cups monterey jack cheese, shredded
1 (3oz) pkg real bacon bits

Cook fries in oven according to package directions. Once they are crispy, top with cheese and bacon bits. Return to oven for 5-10 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Serve with ranch dressing for dipping.

Visit Balancing Beauty and Bedlam for more yummy Appetizer recipes!

Homemade Hot Chocolate

What tastes better on cold nights than yummy hot chocolate?! We love hot chocolate and I was thrilled to find this recipe for super easy homemade hot chocolate! Once you try this, you'll never want to use the instant mix again. ha! You can easily double or triple the recipe too!

Homemade Hot Chocolate (recipe from There is no place like home)
(Printable Version)
1/3 cup cocoa
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup boiling water
3 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla

Combine cocoa, sugar, and salt in a saucepan. Whisk in boiling water and heat mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring continuously. Stir in milk and heat until hot, but not boiling. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Serve with your favorite toppings. We like cool whip, marshmallows, cinnamon, peppermint sticks, or chocolate chips. Serves 3-4.

Be sure to head over to Parenting the Tiniest of Miracles for more holiday drink ideas!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Ham & Bean Soup

Ham & Bean Soup (modified from my Mom)
(Printable Version)
1 cup dried Great Northern beans
2 cups chicken broth (I used gluten-free)
4 cups water
2 cups cooked ham, cut into chunks
1 can Rotel
1/2 an onion, chopped
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Soak beans overnight according to package directions. Rinse and drain. In a large pot combine beans, broth, water, ham, Rotel and onion. Bring to a boil; cover and simmer for 1-1/2 - 2 hours, adding more water as needed. Stir in remaining ingredients. Simmer 30 minutes longer or until beans reach desired softness.

Yield: about 4 servings

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Caramel Pie

You can't see all the yummy gooeyness of this pie because I made it to take to a friend. I'll post a better picture next time I make it.

Everyone loves this pie! You'd never guess that it only takes three ingredients to make!

Caramel Pie
(Printable Version)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 pre-made graham cracker crust (or you can make your own)
1 (8oz) container cool whip, thawed

Boil unopened can of condensed milk in a deep saucepan covered for 2 hours. Make sure that the water covers the can the entire time. Carefully remove can from water and let cool for 30 minutes. Open can and spread caramel evenly on the bottom of the graham cracker crust. Top with cool whip. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

This recipe is linked to Tidy Mom of 2:

Zucchini Casserole

This casserole is fast and super yummy! It's one of my favorite "go-to" side dishes for church dinners or when I'm taking a meal to someone.

Zucchini Casserole (recipe from my Mom)
(Printable Version)
4-5 medium zucchini, washed and cut into chunks
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp. salt
1 stick butter
1 box chicken flavored stuffing mix
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup

Cook zucchini, onion and salt in boiling water for 15 minutes. Drain thoroughly. In a bowl, microwave butter until melted; stir in stuffing mix and set aside. In another bowl, combine remaining ingredients.

Lightly grease a 13x9 glass baking dish. Layer: 1/2 of the stuffing mixture in the bottom of the pan, then add zucchini and onion, spread carrot mixture over zucchini, and then top with remaining stuffing mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Frosted Pumpkin Cranberry Bars

These bars are amazing! They got rave reviews at our church dinner last Sunday!

Frosted Pumpkin Cranberry Bars (modified from Taste of Home)
(Printable Version)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. allspice
3 eggs
1 can (15 oz) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
3/4 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup dried cranberries, chopped

Brown Butter Frosting:
1/2 cup butter
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
4 to 6 T. milk

In a bowl, combine the first eight ingredients. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, pumpkin and butter; stir into dry ingredients until well combined. Stir in cranberries. Spread into a greased 15x10 baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

For frosting, heat the butter in a saucepan over medium heat until golden brown, about 7 minutes. Remove from heat; cool for 5 minutes. Stir in confectioners' sugar, vanilla and enough milk to achieve spreading consistency. Spread over bars. Refrigerate several hours before cutting. Store leftovers in the refrigerator. Yield: about 4 dozen

This recipe is linked to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday!